Life Lessons from Chickens

Life Lessons from Chickens

The great thing about raising chickens was the satisfaction of routine and consistency, and the ultimate payout of fresh eggs. It was the same familiar, exciting process every year: Each spring we would return to the feed store and pick out another chick. One year,...
Chicken Funeral

Chicken Funeral

We had a chicken funeral once, which was most memorable because my little brother almost burned out my eye with a stick of incense.  Our dad was trying to teach us a Chinese tradition that he had learned as a kid: At a funeral you light incense, hold it between...
Victory Garden Rooster

Victory Garden Rooster

During World War II, in the early 1940s, I was just a little girl. My dad was in the Navy, stationed in the South Pacific, and my mom, grandmother, brother and I lived in San Diego. Everyone I knew had “Victory Gardens,” to grow a lot of our own food, since so much...
House Chicken

House Chicken

We had a hen we called House Chicken. She thought she belonged in the house! She would walk right into the house with the dogs and lie down, just like them. Sometimes she walked under the dogs as they came in, trying not to be noticed.  Trying to get her to go...
Sly Elvis

Sly Elvis

We had a white rooster named Elvis, who would lie in wait, then run out and knock down our neighbor’s 1-year-old daughter. Elvis would not attack unless he could do it on the sly. It was like playing Red Light, Green Light: Red Light, if we looked at him, he would...